The Interlacing of Divine Command and Divine Strength
Ezekiel 2:1, 2
And he said to me, Son of man, stand on your feet, and I will speak to you.…

The commands of God are acts of kindness. If he had abandoned us, he would give us no indications of his will. He is not so unreasonable as to give commands without also proffering help. If he says "This is the way," he also says, "I will be with thee." Hence, with Augustine, we may say to God, "Give what thou requirest, and require what thou pleasest."

I. COMMAND. "Stand upon thy feet." The form of address, "son of man," was intended to encourage the prophet. The vision of God's kingdom, and of his royal state, bad oppressed the mind of Ezekiel, and he had prostrated himself before such majestic splendour. But now the voice of the supreme Monarch assures him that he may also find a place among the honoured servants of Jehovah. Though but a frail man, a descendant of erring progenitors, he was yet a man, and therefore capable of high attainment and noble service. There was no hardship implied in this command to stand upon his feet. It chimed in with his own predisposition. Duty taken step by step, in easy gradations, becomes a delight. The requirement was honourable. There had been occasion for prostrate humility in the presence of the holy God. But humility is the way to honour. Now he is required to lift himself up to the full stature of his manhood, and to be ready for active and willing service. Use thy feet! Look heavenward! Be a man! Equip thyself for service!

II. PROMISE. "I will speak unto thee." This is a stupendous act of Divine condescension to hold intercourse with fallen, fickle men. It is a mark of special favour if an earthly monarch calls a commoner into his presence, discloses to him royal counsels, and engages his services for the throne. Much greater token of good will is it, if that commoner had been heretofore a detected criminal, a dangerous rebel. But the similitude serves very poorly to illustrate the immeasurable grace of the heavenly King, who stoops to converse with the children of men. Human monarchs have set times, which they set apart to give audience to the noblest of their subjects. But God permits us to approach him at all times, and, if we will but speak to him, he will also speak unto us. "His delights are with the sons of men." He loves to employ men in his service. Yea! he has determined to employ none but men in proclaiming to their brethren the royal purposes of redemption.

III. INDWELLING POWER While Jehovah spake to his servant, "the Spirit entered into him." Finding in Ezekiel a readiness to obey, God immediately imparted to him the needed strength. If the will be present with us, the power to perform will not long be absent. When humility opens the door of the human heart, God will enter and abide there. It was not so much Ezekiel who put forth his strength and rose erect, as the indwelling Spirit, "who set him on his feet." Verily, "in God we live, and move, and exist." "I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me." Ezekiel's name was no misnomer. In very deed, God was his Strength. And the result of the Spirit's entrance, further, was "that I heard him that spake unto me." The very power to hear, whether by the organ of sense, or by the finer aptitude of the spirit, comes alone from God. "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." - D.

Parallel Verses
KJV: And he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee.

WEB: He said to me, Son of man, stand on your feet, and I will speak with you.

The Importance of Self-Respect
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